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    R.J. Robledo New Member

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2012
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    Re: Poems of R.J. Robledo

    Thanks, everyone, for the kind words and helpful critique.

    Okay, here comes for a much more despondent, much less structured, "free verse" experiment.
    I am not very proud of it, but here goes!

    Tourism

    Americans. That’s what we are,
    Children of a young nation.
    A free nation.
    A land of fifty stars
    And thirteen stripes
    And moneyed media,
    The standard of the world in films.
    At least, the standard hypes
    Whatever director helms
    The newest visual tripe
    Till millions trade their labor
    To sit and be enamored
    By a new “artistic” light.
    Reels of fantasy and crime,
    Of countries foreign
    (And ill-portrayed them most),
    Or set in different times―
    Of this’s our nation’s boast.
    And music! What a paragon
    Of merit in the arts
    America imparts
    To the human pantheon.
    We rock and rap and scream
    In emotions we know not,
    Except it’s envy, rage, or lust.
    Dare we will to dream!
    And also mental rust.
    What more is there to dance
    Then writhing, barely clothed,
    In seductive manners posed
    To ensnare us, to entrance?
    Our culture is just that―
    A soured product
    Born of changing germs.
    Each decade brings new stat
    To the minds of youthful swarms.
    A generation’s grown
    By whatever star
    Has reached so far
    To name the mass “their own”.
    Why, ages now have grown so young
    To be contained in twenty years;
    Man can live from Gold to Bronze
    In less than lifetime sung
    By swiftly skipping years.
    We train our kindergarten kids
    What instinct does not dare
    So boldly, rashly share
    Until three times that age.
    Our nation deems it just
    To train children to mate
    At ages that cannot sustain
    The means to procreate.
    What can this serve but lust
    Of minds degenerate?
    But let the math and language slide!
    And why our rudely manners chide?
    Civility is something past.
    Pop culture is our tradition,
    Of ethnic conventions mixed
    In air of sloth, ambition,
    Greed and avarice,
    Or nurtured mindless swarm.
    So proud a land we own!
    Yet why are we the most
    To travel, fly, or boat
    To other peoples’ strands?
    Far we go to seek a piece
    Of peace, a shard of joy
    Engendered by a book, or tale,
    Or poem, or film that sees
    Our own invented ploy.
    Aimless wandering, maybe
    In ancestral land, or country
    Of our inconstant fancy.
    Whatever it is, we cross the seas,
    Yearning for home,
    Looking for it in climes we never knew.
    With people strange we strain
    To imagine some kinship,
    Searching for some lost heritage.
    We laugh and dance
    With primitive rural tribes
    That by their looks, their lives
    Are of simple stance.
    Then we go back to our hotels,
    Full of the day’s exploits;
    And they go home and change
    To their American clothes,
    Testament to our influence.
    We are the West,
    The heart’s desire of ancient days,
    But little more than point deserves the fame.
    If Avalon we are, then hope
    Is not our name,
    For Arthur’s dead,
    And honor with him in this land.

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